Ninth Tacoma Homicide of 2012, Robert Meline

In the early morning hours of Thursday, October 25th, Robert Meline’s 29-year-old son drank a cup of coffee. Two years earlier he’d been released from Western State Mental hospital for treatment of paranoid schizophrenia. He was deemed ‘no longer an imminent threat to himself or those around him.’ Earlier in the week he’d bought a hatchet and told Robert Meline that he was going to kill him.

At just after two in the morning Robert Meline was attacked and killed by his son wielding a hatchet. He was 56 years old. Robert’s screams woke his daughter who found her brother on the stairs carrying a bloody hatchet. She then took her brother down the Pierce County Jail to turn himself in.

Robert was a sixth grade teacher in Bethel School District. By all accounts he was well liked and an all around positive person.  He had been with the school district for over twenty years.

It would be easy to cast blame on Western State and the status of our mental health facilities but unfortunately it’s not a simple problem that can be fixed easily and not every dangerous individual appears to be such before something violent happens.

As always, the comments section is reserved for those who knew and remember Robert Meline and want to share with us what he was like.

-          Jack Cameron

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2 responses to “Ninth Tacoma Homicide of 2012, Robert Meline

  1. shelley patchell

    Mr. Meline was my 4th and 5th grade teacher 1994-1996. He was an amazing teacher. When I entered 4th grade I was so scared to have a male teacher. I always thought they were mean for some weird reason. My mom told mr. Meline my fear. Mrr. Meline made me feel so comfortable and I loved being in his class! He will be truely missed.

  2. Ruthanne Kane-Cremeen

    Mr. meline was and awesone christian dad and school teacher.
    I had him in 6th grade and also babysat for the family when they lived in a small town called Wilbur. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family!!

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